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Rio-bound tourists urged to plan ahead

12 August 2015 09:54

The Maracana Stadium in Brazil

The Maracana Stadium in Brazil

British tourists thinking of visiting Brazil to watch next year's Olympics are being advised to plan immediately with things such as travel insurance.

There is just under a year to go before the Games and the Paralympics start.

But the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) wants to smooth holidaymakers' passage with 'Stay Ahead of the Games'.

This is its travel awareness campaign, which aims to encourage the estimated 380,000 Britons expected to fly to Rio de Janeiro to know the potential pitfalls beforehand.

What is the FCDO's tourist advice?

- book your hotel and Games ticket via sanctioned sellers in advance

- learn the local tongue (Portuguese), if only a few phrases

- ensure your passport is valid for at least six months after setting foot in Brazil

- take out travel insurance

Heeding good advice

The FCDO's latter point is particularly worth heeding.

The Olympics in Brazil is a once-in-a-lifetime experience and spectators do not want planning oversights spoiling their enjoyment.

Taking out respected travel insurance can spare you the hassle experienced by uncovered tourists.

Expert view

Tim Brabants is urging Britons heading to Rio to follow the campaign's advice for a safe, fun-packed visit.

And he should know. Brabants took the 2008 Beijing gold medal in the sprint kayak event.

He describes Brazil as "exciting" and "beautiful", but warns that journeying anywhere on the planet throws up its own pitfalls.

Brabants says he prepared well for travel across four Olympics and urges British tourists to do likewise for the Rio event.